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  Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless otherwise credited.
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Puff-faced Water Snake
   
   

Fig 1


Fig 2


Fig 3


Fig 4


 

 

Family : HOMALOPSIDAE
Species : Homalopsis buccata
Maximum Size : 1.2 metres

The Puff-faced Water Snake inhabits fresh water bodies including swamps, ponds and forest streams. Nocturnal in habits, it feeds mainly on small fish or frogs.

Juveniles are dark brown to black, with orange, red or pale bands with black-edging. Adults are plain brown or grey in colour, and have less distinctive banding. The belly is whitish, and the body scales are keeled. The species can be easily identified by the patterning on top of the broad head. 

The species ranges from India, Bangladesh and Burma through most of Southeast Asia including Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. In Indonesia it occurs on Borneo, Sumatra and Java.


Fig 1 : Fully-grown specimen in freshwater pond at Sungei Buloh, Singapore.

Fig 2 : Sub-adult specimen in typical hunting posture in freshwater swamp forest, Singapore.

Fig 3 : Fully-grown specimen in freshwater pond at Sungei Buloh, Singapore.

Fig 4 :
Sub-adult resting on the silty substrate of a rural stream, Singapore.


References : H2, H3